Posts Tagged ‘fraud’

M&S sparks card fraud

March 16, 2018

M&S has currently an Up To 50% Sale. Yes, a con, it should be a real sale, 50% Sale, not 50% in huge letters and hidden in the small print up to 50% which is meaningless.

Contempt for customers by M&S. The same contempt we see when M&S cannot be bothered to man the check out tills in their food sections.

No surprise, M&S a failing retailer.

There is though a fraud mimicking the contempt for customers, thus appearing to be genuine.

Sparks Card holders have received an e-mail, telling them they have been specially selected to take advantage of the 50% Sale, have to buy now, click on a link, have less than six hours, and to make the case, a clock is counting down.

It looks legit only that is all too easy.

The e-mail address looks odd, but could be legit.

It is not. Do not clink on any of the links.

The giveaway is the clock. Standard for fraudsters, limited time to take advantage of an offer.

The e-mail address raises doubts.

A further giveaway the points recorded.

Only one way to find out.

Purchase made in M&S, the usual appalling wait, insufficient tills manned.

The points recorded on the till receipt did not match those recorded in the scam e-mail.

A conversation with a store manager.

She kindly checked her Sparks Card e-mail, mention of the Sale, virtually identical, but no clock counting down.

M&S have been asked to notify every single Sparks Card holder to warn them of this fraud.

If you have received this fraud, delete, but better still mark as junk or a phishing scam.

It would also be wise to run a virus scanner.

It is also worth checking with your bank for any fraudulent transactions, especially if you are foolish enough to do on-line banking.

Now it may be, M&S also ran the clock. If they did, they are using the same sales tactics as fraudsters, and if they did, it opens the floodgates to fraudsters to make their scams look legit.

Dodgy builders

March 13, 2018

Last week within a space of two days, dodgy builders called, one offering repairs to the roof, the other the roof required washing.

If dodgy builders come calling, do not engage, call the police, if maybe work does need carrying out, ask reputable builders to take a look and provide a quote.

A cold calling zone can be established.

roof repairs

Dodgy builder calls. The roof requires repair work.

He was in for a shock. A meeting with Trading Standards and Police was taking place at the house where he called.

When questioned, he refused to answer questions, who he was, name of company, turned nasty then legged it up the street.

The incident was called in.

roof needs washing

How gullible are people?

Dodgy builder calls late morning.

Two rough looking white guys in their twenties, dressed in dark clothing, the one who called at the door a black beard. Had it been night they were dressed for a bit of house breaking.

The roof requires washing. This was following a morning of heavy rain.

Not only did the roof require washing, it required spraying to make it waterproof.

We have had centuries of straw, slate and roofing tiles, but the roof needs spraying to make waterproof.

Dodgy builder refused to leave his leaflet. Managed to acquire one left in letterbox of neighbour.

Police were notified. Local beat officer arrived promptly.

no cold calling zones

Where there is a problem with nuisance doorstep callers,  the Police and Trading Standards with the agreement of local residents can establish a No Cold Calling Zone.

scams and fraud

Dodgy builders are one of many frauds and scams relieving gullible people of their hard earned money, often of their life savings.

Phishing scams, text, e-mail, dodgy web sites, telephone calls, used to obtain bank account details. Within minutes account will be emptied.

Vital Nature and associated companies dodgy pills and potions scam. Pills and potions of dubious provenance, operating out of France though that could be a front address.  Credit card fraud, money laundering, harassment phone calls.

Commemorative mint scams, must have commemorative coins, offered at special price. In reality worthless junk metal.

Australian Lottery scam. You have won but need to pay administrative fee to release your winnings.

Long lost relative scam. Would love to visit, if could only could afford air fare from Australia.

Phishing scam

February 22, 2018

A few days ago I received an e-mail purporting to come from HMRC.

I did not open it. To open it risks malware. Nor did I delete. I mark such e-mail as a phishing scam.

The call that comes through purporting to be from your bank.

There has been an attempted fraud on your account.


Yes, but do not worry, our fraud team caught it in time.

Can you  before we discuss it any further confirm who you are? We will need to ask you a few questions.

Full name, date of birth, address ….

This is another example of a phishing scam.

Never discuss anything on the phone, and that includes carrying out a survey.

There has been two of these in the last couple of weeks.

One claiming to be a survey by a hospital, another a random survey.

Yet more examples of phishing scams.

For fraudsters a very useful app for their smart phone. Can set the number of where calling from that will appear on the victim’s phone, can set background noise to create the illusion of where calling from.

As I am writing, a call from a fraudster.

Hello, I am from BT Open Reach, I would like to discuss Internet.

Do not have BT Open Reach.

I would like to discuss Internet.

Don’t have Internet, middle of nowhere.

You do not know why I am calling?

Yes, you are a fraudster, I am recording the call. I have a police officer here.

You have a police officer there?

Yes. I have a police officer here, I am recording the call, the police officer would like to talk to you.

The line goes dead.

Facebook is a goldmine for fraudsters. Facebook is not a social network, facebook exists to steal and abuse personal information.

No matter how many times people are advised not to, they post on facebook where they live, schools, work, name of dog, name of partner, date of birth. All of which is valuable information to the fraudster.  And to help the opportunist burglar, we are on holiday.

Once the phishing scam has access to bank account details, the account will be emptied, possibly even before the call ended.

Easy money for a conversation lasting little more than a minute.  Scams that are netting the fraudsters millions of pounds.

The fraudsters recruit students, who recruit more students. Their accounts are used to launder the money.

Phishing scam is not the only fraud, there are many many more.

Vital Nature and associated companies dodgy pills and potions scam. Pills and potions of dubious provenance, laced with lead, several hundred times recommended dosage, billed for stuff not ordered, stuff ordered does not arrived, harassment phone calls, credit card fraud with card details. Scam mail delivered by Royal Mail.  Operates out of France and that may only be a postal address, a front for somewhere else.  By operating from France, outside jurisdiction of Police in the UK.

Commemorative coin scam. Mints offering worthless commemorative coins. That being only the first part of the scam. Second part, unsolicited coins arrive, if not returned at your expense will be billed.

Dodgy builder scam.  Work that did not need doing. Details of house security passed to opportunist burglars.

Australian Lottery scam. You have won but need to pay administrative fee to release your winnings.

Long lost relative scam. Would love to visit, if could only could  afford air fare from Australia.

The Westminster Collection

February 7, 2018

Latest scam from The Westminster Collection is the RAF 100 commemorative coin.

Delivered in an official looking envelope, with accompanying sob story of two WWII aircrew, and what better way to commemorate these brave aircrew than buying a worthless commemorative coin.

Not only that, you have even been specially selected for a discounted special offer, you and every other mug who has received the letter, fools and their money easily parted.

Veterans appear to have been targeted. Has a veteran organisation handed over details? Worrying and depressing if that be the case. But equally could be on a scam list.

The Princess Di coin scam, Falkland War coin scam and many others form what is known as the mint scam.

These are not the only scams. Vital Nature and associated companies pills and potions scam.

These worthless commemorative coins forms only part of the commemorative mint scam. The next part, if foolishly part with money, will be supplied unsolicited coins, billed if not send them back at your expense.

Send a polite letter, have not ordered unsolicited goods, will be kept for ten days then disposed of, onus on the mint to arrange collection at their expense.

The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 state that unsolicited goods which have not been ordered and are sent ‘out of the blue’ can be treated as an unconditional gift; in other words, you can keep them or dispose of them as you wish. The Regulations make it a criminal offence to demand payment or threaten legal action to obtain payment for unsolicited goods or services.

If as has been reported RAF Association has endorsed this coin, the trustees should resign for legitimising a scam.

If wish to commemorate aircrew from WWII, visit International Bomber Command Centre, give them a donation.

Please warn veterans of this scam.

How the scam works

December 21, 2014

People who have booked using, are finding unauthorised payments being taken out of their credit card account.

Here is how one scam works.

A phone call advising to expect an e-mail.

Follows an e-mail, due to pressure on rooms, now require you to pay in full, upfront.

The two stage process, lulls people into a false sense of security, they accept the e-mail, but just in case, there is a number to call to receive reassurance.

The minnows who are operating the scam have no idea who they work for, or who else is operating the scam, as they are working from home.

One scammer, is contacting 500+ targets a day.

This of course begs the question, how are the scammers in possession of personal data, including full booking details?

It is not the only scam. is still not warning its clients of the scams.

If you think your are being targeted, contact the hotel, ask why are they demanding payment up front, as this is not standard practice. You settle your bill on checking out.

And to avoid falling victim, do not use use another booking agency for example Expedia or book the hotel direct.

Mobile phone scam

November 5, 2014

Telecomms companies are keeping quiet about a massive mobile phone fraud. When victims are stung, the phone companies are targeting the victims not the fraudsters to recover the money.

There is no such thing as easy money, unless you are a banker, so why do people fall so easily for scam get-rich-quick schemes?

Students are being targeted with a mobile phone scam that runs something like this …

Hand over your name, address, bank account and other personal details. We will send you a brand new iPhone or other top quality phone. Pop it in the post to an address we will give you. For each one, we will pay £50 (which is why we need your bank account details).

Want to make even more money? Recruit all your mates, and we will give you 20%.

Sound too good to be true?

Unfortunately it was.

Mobile phone contracts, often multiple phone contrasts (that is where the phones came from) were taken out in the names of those who handed over their personal details. Many students are now thousands if not tens of thousands of pounds in debt and are being pursued by the mobile phone companies and debt collectors.

The mobile phone companies know there is a fraud, and yet it is the victims they are chasing, not the fraudsters?

EE claims one in ten phone contracts in targeted areas are fraudulent. In that case, why no information in their shops, no leaflets, no posters, no warning to customers, staff not even aware?

EE claim there are leaflets in their shops. Not true. Not only no leaflets, the staff are not aware.

In one EE shop, staff even took the trouble to check on their system, and could find nothing. The first they knew, was when they were asked and had to be told what was going on.

The phone companies know there is fraud. But rather than target the fraudsters, they are targeting the victims of the fraud.

Anyone who is a victim, should report to the police and refuse to pay a penny to the greedy mobile phone companies.

Universities and student unions should be doing more. They should be alerting students, and when they fall victim, giving legal support including representation in court should the phone companies pursue through the court.

If harassed by a debt collector, it is just that, harassment. Report to the police and refuse to hand over a penny.

Only a Court can order payment of a debt, and as this is a fraudulent debt, should be challenged in court.

The mobile phone companies are shysters.

Vodafone does not pay tax.

They con customers into taking out expensive mobile phone contracts, when it is far cheaper to buy an unlocked phone and pay as you go with a sim card from giffgaff and other virtual networks.

Contracts are a massive rip-off, that is why the companies are so keen to push them, as a lot of money to be made. Users are nearly always better off buying an unlocked phone and a pay as you go sim from Lebara or Lycamobile or giffgaff.

Note: LycaMobile a tax-dodger and major Tory Party donor.

Behaviour of toxic RBS beggars belief

October 24, 2012

The manner in which toxic Royal Bank of Scotland treats its customers is unbelievable.

This morning two letters from toxic RBS.

The first tells me that to save paper, Royal Bank of Scotland will forthwith only send out statements once every three months. Should I wish to opt out (I never chose to opt in) I can either go on-line and fill out a form or I can call a premium rate number.

Since when has toxic RBS cared about the environment? RBS funds tar sands extraction in Canada, one of the planet’s dirtiest oil projects.

A fraud took place on my account last year. RBS claimed it was my fault for not notifying them immediately. I actually did, I notified as soon as I received my statement. Were statements only every three months that gives fraudsters plenty of time to milk accounts dry.

The second letter was to thank me for contacting them. I haven’t, and only a couple of weeks ago they passed without my consent my account details to a third party who claimed this had been done because I was uncontactable.

I am told RBS will look into my complaint (I have not filed a complaint), but not until 19 November 2012, because they are overwhelmed with complaints.

The letter states a leaflet on complaints is enclosed. No, a badly reproduced photocopy of a leaflet, which has been reduced to fit on an A4 sheet and is unreadable.

Last year a fraudulent transaction took place on an account. It took months, many wasted hours on the phone, to resolve, or at least I thought it was resolved. Earlier this year it all cropped up again with RBS falsely claiming that money was owing on an account that had not been used since the fraud took place.

Several weeks ago I asked a senior person in an RBS branch to investigate. She wrote a detailed report and sent it off.

A couple of weeks ago I received a letter from a cowboy outfit called Power2Contact claiming RBS was unable to contact me and that they had been asked to do so on their behalf, and they would be paying me a visit. Only the day before, I was with the helpful young lady who had written a report, who said no, no one had got back to her. I had not given RBS permission to pass personal information to these cowboys.

A week later, I went in to see her. Like me she said she was appalled. She said Monday, she would see what she could do.

That was last week. On the Friday I went in to see her to see what progress she had made. She said none, other than they are wanting your telephone number (no reason was given why and seems to be a trawling expedition for customer information). I asked that she called them whilst I was there. As she warned me, nothing had happened. The report that she had written had been ignored as no one had the intelligence to tie it in with whatever else was happening.

At my request, she said she would escalate by two levels.

The only response (and that is assuming it is a response), has been a letter dated 22 October 2012, received today 24 October 2012.

Spanish bank Santander has pulled out of a deal to buy RBS branches.

RBS has suspended get cash, a fraudsters dream, a mobile phone app that lets fraudsters withdraw money from customers accounts.

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